Monthly Archives: April 2012

Michelle Obama

I really love working with kids.  They are so funny and smart and do say the most amazing things!

Today, I performed for a lovely brand new school in Maple,  ON.  In honour of Sunday’s celebration of Earth day, I told stories about the earth, wind, water and fire from cultures around the world.

One of the stories I told was a creation myth form Ghana called,  All the Different Colours.  At the end of the story I said, “…The girl spirit became the first mother and the boy spirit became the first father and the children became all the people in the world.”  A six year old in the front row raised his hand and said, “I have a comment to make. I know who you were talking about!  The first ‘mother’ was Michelle Obama and so I guess that would make the ‘first father’ Barack Obama!  Right?”

How cute is that!?  Kids do say the darndest things!

Happy Storytelling!

Cheryl Thornton



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Filed under Art in Education, Children, Creativity, Drama, Education, Elementary schools, Fariytales, Folktales, Literacy, Multiculturalism, Myths, Performing

Stories at a Business Seminar

I attended a great business seminar this week given by Shahmeen Sadiq, a leadership and team development professional.  She talked about the importance of setting positive thought habits instead of repeating unsuccessful reaction patterns.  Many of us come up against a problem, fall into anxiety and react with a temporary solution. Shahmeen suggested beginning with a vision, which inspires a passionate action.  Her points were made perfectly clear through the stories she told.  I was struck by how powerful stories are in a business setting.  Everyone listened intently as she told her stories and afterwards, the group felt a deeper connection with Shameen and her ideas.  Check out her site at:

Stories are a such a powerful means of communication.

Happy Storytelling!

Cheryl Thornton

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Filed under Creativity, Education, Multiculturalism, Storytelling

Triage with Androcles and the Lion

Yesterday, I told Androcles and the Lion, the story about the run away slave who removes a thorn from a lion’s paw, later to be saved by the lion,  to a group of three and four  year olds.  This timeless tale about kindness, compassion and reciprocity, is know in cultures around the world.  After mentioning that stories often teach important lessons, I asked the children what they thought this story could teach.   A four year old girl raised her hand and said, “I think we can learn how important it is to remove thorn from your hand and to always put a bandage on it.”

Her classmates all agreed.

I was reminded of how important first aid is to this age group.  Three and four year olds love showing off their bandaged skinned knees, bruised shins and nicked fingers.

Good stories often contain more than one important lesson.  From now on, I’ll remember the triage lesson in Androcles and the Lion.

Happy Storytelling!

Cheryl Thornton

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Filed under Art in Education, Children, Creativity, Education, Elementary schools, Folktales, Literacy, Multiculturalism, Myths, Stories, Storytelling